When eating, we think we are feeding ourselves. But our food doesn't necessarily feed us. It doesn't necessarily enter our body and disseminate nourishment to our cells, organs, and the systems that fuel us. Sometimes we eat and our food hurts us. It drains our energy, screws up our body systems, and increasingly disseminates toxins. I spent almost 6 days refusing to give my body food that would hurt it; a break from my typical diet,which, despite being much better than the average American diet, still overexposes me to toxins and nutritionally void calories.
The physical benefits included losing 7 pounds, resetting my sugar-addicted system, finding relief for a chronic condition (my interstitial cystitis), and gaining mood stability. I didn't feel hungry and I had more energy. A successful detox.
My first full day back on a regular diet didn't go very well. I had milk for breakfast and chicken salad on a roll for lunch. Russ and I left after lunch to go away overnight by ourselves. Dinner was more chicken, mashed potatoes, and green beans at a restaurant. My body revolted and I felt sick the rest of the night. It was that feeling of food sitting in my belly. The next morning, all I really wanted was milk. Even my breakfast - oatmeal with honey and dried fruit - was too sweet. Hubby and I visited the Lindt store near our hotel and even my favorite dark chocolate overwhelmed my palate. Hunger pursued me constantly.
That was three weeks ago. And while I am not getting sick anymore, I still seem to be hungry all the time. What I think is that my body is wanting something I am not giving it enough of - pure, wholesome, nutrient-dense,God-given,food of the earth. I am giving it refined sugar when it wants the natural sugars found in things like milk, fruits and vegetables. I am ingesting chemical, additives, and dyes when it wants accessible vitamins, minerals, probiotics, and healthy enzymes. For five days I flooded my body with REAL, and it's not going back to PROCESSED without a fight. Which is good and, by God's grace, I hope to do even better than before.
Interestingly,what started as a simple physical detox also ended up being a detox for mind and spirit. I have fasted in the past for spiritual reasons. The idea is that denying a base instinct and having hunger constantly drive me to prayer, clarifies and reinforces my dependence solely on the Lord for all sustenance. But when fasting, the focus on food is in relationship to being hungry, and the spiritual implications are in relationship to denying something my body needs (making a sacrifice) and focusing on God (to look at my sacrifice and bring a spiritual renewal of whatever sort is needed at the time). But for the five and half days I experienced not eating but yet not being hungry, the spiritual implications became evaluation of my sinful relationship to food. I'm not talking about the sin of gluttony, although I'll admit to being gluttonous at times, rather my use of food to fill emotional needs that ONLY Christ can fill (as opposed to a physical need that God can sustain for a time in fasting), my addiction to certain foods, and abuse of my body through unhealthy food when I otherwise had a choice. Stripping myself of the choice to eat, food could not to talk to my brain and convince me nothing was wrong with my eating habits (sugar in particular has a very powerful voice). It was an amazing breakthrough for me, the results of which I am trying desperately to hold on to.
Would I repeat this detox? Absolutely! I'm thinking longer next time.
Would I recommend that others do it? Absolutely. Unless you have medical reasons, there are only benefits to gain.
I'd like to thank the farmers at The Family Cow for their ceaseless work to make quality organic raw milk available to the public. I could not have done this without that resource.